Nitrate Won't Wait: History of Film Preservation in the United States

Overview

A film historian provides a well-referenced and opinionated history of US film preservation (and destruction). Appendices include major film and video libraries, a subject guide to films preserved in archives, and recommendations for safeguarding moving images. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR
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Nitrate Won't Wait: A History of Film Preservation in the United States

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Overview

A film historian provides a well-referenced and opinionated history of US film preservation (and destruction). Appendices include major film and video libraries, a subject guide to films preserved in archives, and recommendations for safeguarding moving images. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR
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Editorial Reviews

Booknews
Traces the preservation of newsreels, television programs, and color movies, with anecdotes of important people and institutions. Also explores such controversial topics as colorization, commercial film archives, and the politicalization of preservation efforts. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780786408368
  • Publisher: McFarland & Company, Incorporated Publishers
  • Publication date: 8/7/2000
  • Edition description: ALTERNATE
  • Pages: 240
  • Product dimensions: 9.00 (w) x 6.00 (h) x 0.60 (d)

Meet the Author

Film historian Anthony Slide of Studio City, California was hailed by Lillian Gish as "our preeminent historian of the silent film era." He is the author of numerous works of film scholarship.

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Table of Contents

Acknowledgments
Introduction 1
1 Early Years and the Museum of Modern Art 9
2 Newsreel Preservation and the National Archives 25
3 The Library of Congress 36
4 Thanks to the Film Collectors 45
5 The Fifties and Sixties 61
6 Things Are Seldom What They Seem 74
7 Specialization in the Seventies 89
8 New Areas of Preservation 102
9 Colorization 122
10 Stock Footage Libraries 134
11 Into the Nineties 145
Appendix 1: Members of FIAF 163
Appendix 2: Major U.S. Noncommercial Film Archives 168
Appendix 3: Major Non-U.S. Commercial Film and Video Libraries 172
Appendix 4: Major U.S. Commercial and Stock Footage Libraries 175
Appendix 5: Subject Guide to U.S. Films Preserved in U.S.
Archives 179
Appendix 6: Recommendation for the Safeguarding and Preservation of Moving Images 181
Appendix 7: Restoring Josef von Sternberg's The Saga of Anatahan 184
Appendix 8: The Scandinavian Way 193
Bibliography 1: General Works 203
Bibliography 2: Technical Works 209
Bibliography 3: Colorization and the National Film Preservation Board 211
Bibliography 4: Specific Projects 213
Index 219
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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted July 8, 2002

    The Mis-adventures of film preservation

    Anthony Slide writes a fascinating history of the film preservation movement in the United States. After covering the dangers of nitrate film and the wholesale junking of film prints during the silent era, he documents the beginning of the archive movement in the 1930s and 1940s. You would think that the book would be filled with stories of heroic efforts to save films, but there are just as many stories of incompetent and egotistical administrators who did more damage than good. The American Film Institute did a good job for a few years helping archives to preserve and restore films, but it quickly became a political organization and mostly claimed credit for projects that it had nothing to do with. The book goes into detail into the 'colorization' controversy, a process which thankfully has pretty much disappeared since this book was published in 1992. There is also a section on how Scandinavian archives have done a much better job of preserving their countries' film heritage. If you are a serious lover of silent films or the golden age of sound films, you will definitely want to read this book!

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